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Sunday, June 9, 2013

Crane operator accused in Philadelphia building collapse was high on marijuana

PHILADELPHIA – A heavy equipment operator who is accused of being high on marijuana when a downtown building collapsed onto a thrift store, killing six people, is in custody after surrendering to face charges in the deaths, police said.

Sean Benschop, who has a lengthy police record, surrendered Saturday and faces six counts of involuntary manslaughter, 13 counts of recklessly endangering another person and one count of risking a catastrophe.

A warrant had been issued for his arrest and police had been searching for him. He is awaiting arraignment.

Authorities believe the 42-year-old Benschop had been using an excavator Wednesday when the remains of the four-story building under demolition gave way and toppled onto an attached Salvation Army thrift store, killing two employees and four customers and injuring 13 others. Full Article

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